DoD Energy Initiatives for Military Operations: Myths and Facts
DoD has a comprehensive effort to improve energy security in military operations. DoD's efforts in this area are new and sometimes misunderstood. That's why we've compiled the facts about DoD energy initiatives below.
Myth: DoD is going "green."
Fact: DoD is improving energy use in military operations to create a more effective military force - one that is more agile, lethal, and adaptable. In Iraq and Afghanistan, thousands of troops have been killed or injured moving and protecting fuel around the battlefield. By using energy better, we increase combat capability, lower risks to our troops and reduce costs. As part of President Obama's commitment to a strong military, DoD is harnessing energy efficiency and new energy technologies to give our forces better energy options on the battlefield, at sea, and in the air.
Myth: Federal energy dollars are going through DoD as part of a political agenda.
Fact: DoD's operational energy investments are focused on meeting warfighter needs. From portable ruggedized solar to reduce the need to transport and protect fuel in combat to shipboard hybrid electric drives that let our Navy operate longer and sail further, DoD is tackling energy use to improve military capability.
Myth: When troops come home from the Middle East, this issue will solve itself.
Fact: As we prepare for the future, DoD has to apply the hard energy lessons we've learned in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's clear that a modern military will need efficient and renewable energy options wherever the battlefield is. That's why we are searching for the most innovative solutions the private sector has to offer – from fuel-sipping aircraft engines to lightweight batteries for troops on patrol.
Myth: DoD's energy efforts are a recent development.
Fact: Even as President Obama has led on these efforts, they have spanned both the Bush and Obama Administrations and have broad bipartisan support in Congress, including from a newly formed Defense Energy Security Caucus. The nation's leaders know this is about the military's efforts to protect and defend the nation.
Myth: DoD is willing to spend hundreds of dollars per gallon on alternative fuels.
Fact: DoD is taking steps to ensure military forces will always have the fuel they need. By testing equipment to operate with advanced alternative fuels, the military services are positioning themselves to take advantage of alternative fuels when they are cost-competitive with conventional fuels. For the long term, our military will need alternatives to petroleum, particularly for our existing fleet of ships and planes, which will be with us for decades to come.
Myth: DoD's energy investments are primarily focused on alternative energy sources.
Fact: DoD is planning approximately $1.4B in investments in 2013 to improve energy use in military operations, almost 90% of which are for energy efficiency measures. The remaining 10% is to expand our supply options with alternative and renewable energy. This compares with over $16B in expected fuel costs in FY13.
This fact sheet was developed by the office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense, Operational Energy Plans and Programs. Download the PDF below.